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Surname Weatherby - Meaning and Origin

all surnames with 'W'

Weatherby: What does the surname Weatherby mean?

The last name Weatherby is of Anglo-Saxon origin and is derived from a place name. It is believed to have originated from places known as Weobley in Herefordshire or Wetherby in West Yorkshire in the United Kingdom. The name itself indicates the location of the individual's residence and was used to identify where they lived.

Moreover, the term "Weatherby" is a combination of two Old English elements: "wether" and "by". "Wether" refers to a castrated ram while "by" means farm or settlement in Old Norse language. Thus, Weatherby could potentially mean "sheep farm" or "ram's settlement."

As it often happens with ancient place names, the true meaning or origin can only be speculated upon, as much depends on the local geographical features and the linguistic transformations over centuries. However, through these probabilities, we can deduce that the individuals bearing this name were likely to be related to farming, particularly sheep farming, or living in an area known for its sheep production.

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Weatherby: Where does the name Weatherby come from?

The last name Weatherby is most commonly found in the United Kingdom and United States today. In the UK, there are particularly strong concentrations around the Leeds and Bradford areas in northern England.

It is also a very common name in the USA; in the most recent census report in 2010, Weatherby was the 2,123rd most frequent surname in the country. There were over 1.7 million people with the Weatherby last name in the US at that time, with the highest concentrations found in the Southern, Midwestern, and Northeastern parts of the country.

In terms of sheer numbers, the largest population of Weatherby’s would be found in the UK, although there are almost certainly more family trees in the US due to the country's larger population. Weatherbys may have originally come from British nobility or landed gentry, and even today, many who still bear the name do have connections tracing back to their noble counterparts.

Despite originally coming from Europe, the last name Weatherby is found today in many countries all around the world, an indication of its success in spreading its roots and taking hold in countries beyond its point of origin.

Variations of the surname Weatherby

The surname Weatherby is of English origin, and it derives from a place-name reference to the settlement of Weatherby located in North Yorkshire. Variations of this surname include Wetherebo, Wetherbie, Wetherell, and Wetherell.

The spelling of Weatherby likely began as Wetherebo or Wetherbie in the Middle Ages, which turned into Weatherby by the 17th century. This name was used as various locations in both England and Scotland began to adopt the Anglicized version of the name, which was Weatherby. By the 19th century, the spelling variation had been fully incorporated into the meaning of the surnames.

As with most surnames that have a common origin, further variations or spellings can sometimes be encountered, such as Wetherell and Wetherell. It is worth noting that some of these variations were used by different branches of the same family at one point in time, which can often lead to confusion as to the exact origin of a surname.

Due to the vast geographical distance between the various locations where the surname Weatherby can be found, it is highly likely that there are other surnames with a similar origin. These can range from Weterby to Wetterby, and from Wetterbaugh to Wetherbee. It is not uncommon for a surname to change its spelling over time as it is passed down through the generations.

Famous people with the name Weatherby

  • Georgia Weatherby: American actress best known for her roles in House (2004) and The L Word (2004–2009).
  • Emaleth Weatherby: American actress who has appeared on the television series All My Children (2003) and The Red Road (2014).
  • Pierce Weatherby: Actor and voice actor best known for his work on the Nickelodeon show SpongeBob SquarePants (1999–present).
  • Sarah Weatherby: American writer and director who has written for shows such as The Nanny (1993–1999) and Gilmore Girls (2000–2007).
  • Frank Weatherby: American artist whose work can be found in various galleries and collections around the world.
  • Fred Weatherby: American politician who was a member of the New Jersey General Assembly (1960–1989).
  • Kevin Weatherby: American baseball player who played for the Pittsburgh Pirates (2001–2005) and the Detroit Tigers (2006–2009).
  • Vicky Weatherby: British fashion designer who has been featured in international fashion magazines and is best known for her high-end vintage-inspired womenswear.
  • John Weatherby: British film director and producer, best known for his work on the documentary series Cities of the Future (2018).
  • Charlotte Weatherby: English singer-songwriter who has released a number of EPs and singles and has appeared on stages such as at the annual Red Rocks Park Music Festival.

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